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Relax & have fun at the top parks in Ottawa

Relax & have fun at the top parks in Ottawa

Take a break from your busy life and enjoy a lovely stroll or a relaxing picnic in a public park! 

The parks in Ottawa come in a wide variety. Some double as a garden, so you can treat yourself to the sight of pretty flowers in bloom; meanwhile, others boast sprawling lawns, allowing you to sit down and relax or play fetch with your dogs. 

Here are some of the parks in Ottawa that you should check out for a fun day out by yourself or with your loved ones.

Confederation Park

From: maingr101

Address: Elgin St, Ottawa, ON K1P 5J2, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Contact Number: +16132395000


Confederation Park was first opened to the public in 1967 as part of Canada’s centennial celebration. It’s widely known for its tulip fields that come alive during spring. 

Other than that, this park is also popular as a picnic spot. 

Another interesting thing about this park is its several interesting monuments and sculptures. Examples include the Boer War Monument, the National Aboriginal Veterans Monument, and a fountain that originated from Trafalgar Square in London, England.

You’ll also find remarkable trees here. In particular, the park has a few cherry blossom trees, and they look so pretty during spring. 

Pro Tip:
If you’re visiting during the summer, don’t miss out on the CCN Bistro. It’s a food kiosk that serves various food and drinks, such as sandwiches, salads, and more.

Major’s Hill Park

From: arlynamaria

Address: Mackenzie Ave, Ottawa, ON K1N 1G8, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Contact Number: +18004651867


Major’s Hill Park has a convenient location in Ottawa. Its location lets you enjoy stunning views of the Rideau Canal and the Ottawa River, and it’s close to many iconic city sights, such as the Parliament Buildings.

Aside from all that, the park features rolling lawns that invite you to sit down on a blanket and just enjoy your surroundings. If you want to move your body a little bit, follow the winding paths and see where they take you. 

Pro Tip:
Springtime is the best time to visit this park because the tulips will be in bloom, making the whole place burst in color. The sight is so breathtaking! 

Andrew Haydon Park

From: polinagoldfish

Address: 3127 Carling Ave, Nepean, ON K2H 5A6, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—7 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Andrew Haydon Park is arguably one of the most underrated parks in Ottawa. It’s located on the edge of the Ottawa River, which means you can enjoy lovely strolls by the riverside here. 

Bikers are more than welcome to traverse this park as well!

One of the park’s highlights is the bandshell, where local artists perform occasionally. The park also has ponds and marshes, so you can easily feel immersed in nature when strolling here.

If you’re visiting during the summer, there’s a splash pad in this park as well. Feel free to cool down in this water playground. 

Pro Tips:
Be careful of the geese, especially during the summer. A lot of the time, Canada geese leave their waste on the grass and paths, so watch your step and the ground before you lay down your blanket. Dogs are allowed in this park, but please, put them on a leash. Also, don’t make them go near the splash pad. 

Hog’s Back Park

From: ncc_ccn

Address: 600 Hog’s Back Rd, Ottawa, ON K1V 1H8, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—7 am to 10 pm

Contact Number: +16132395000


Hog’s Back Park is named after Hog’s Back Falls (technically, its official name is the Prince of Wales Falls), a series of artificial waterfalls on the Rideau River. These waterfalls are a result of the construction of the Rideau Canal in the early 1800s. 

These falls are truly a sight to behold, and if you want to get the best view, be sure to go to the lookout platform. This platform is also perfect for spotting birds, so if you’re an avian enthusiast, you might want to bring your binoculars here. 

Aside from the waterfalls, the park has clusters of trees and sprawling meadows. For this reason, it’s a popular spot for hikers and families. 

Pro Tip:
There are several picnic tables around the park if you want to enjoy a relaxing picnic. 

Rideau Falls Park

From: ottawatourism

Address: 50 Sussex Dr, Ottawa, ON K1M 2K1, Canada

Operating Hours

  • Monday to Friday—9 am to 12 pm, 1 to 4 pm
  • Closed on Saturday and Sunday

Contact Number: +16132395000


Speaking of a park with waterfalls, another perfect example is Rideau Falls Park. The waterfalls here actually used to power an industrial area in the 1800s, but after World War II, the area was redeveloped into a public park. 

This park is pretty small compared to the other ones in this list, making it a hidden gem. That said, it does have landscaped lawns facing the water, so it’s a great place to escape and simply enjoy the sight of nature. 

Additionally, the International Peace Garden is within the vicinity, so be sure to check out the gorgeous displays of flowers there. 

Pro Tip:
Are you hungry? You can dine in Tavern on the Falls, the restaurant within the park. 

You can order classic snacks like hotdogs and tacos. Alcoholic drinks are available here as well. 

Do keep in mind that Tavern on the Falls is closed during the winter.

Strathcona Park

From: judy_kavanagh

Address: 25 Range Rd, Ottawa, ON K1N 8J3, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

What was once a swampy floodplain due to the Rideau River is now a spacious park in Ottawa and very popular among the residents of the Sandy Hill neighborhood. 

Strathcona Park is designed to look like a classic English park. That’s why you can find an old-school fountain on top of the hill, a play structure that looks like ancient ruins, and sprawling lawns that are perfect for picnics, strolling, and other fun activities. 

Sometimes, this park even hosts food festivals, so you can enjoy the best of the local cuisine here. Just check the Ottawa Festivals website because they post regular updates about the different festivals happening in the city. 

Pro Tip:
Feeling the heat of summer? Cool down by swimming in the park’s outdoor pool. 

Vincent Massey Park

From: bust_it_away_photography

Address: Heron Rd, Ottawa, ON K1V 2E4, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—7 am to 9 pm

Contact Number: +16132395000


Vincent Massey Park is another hidden gem along the Rideau River, so if you want to stay away from crowds, this is the park for you. 

Despite being underrated, Vincent Massey Park is well-equipped. There’s a field if you want to play sports like softball or baseball. 

If you want to enjoy a fun picnic with your family, there are several tables and barbeque pits as well. 

There’s also a bandstand in this park. If you’re lucky, you just might be able to catch a live performance here.  

Pro Tip:
Be aware that the toilets in this park are only open from May to mid-October. This is important to know if you’re planning to visit during the winter.

Minto Park

From: idigelgin

Address: 102 Lewis St, Ottawa, ON K2P 0S7, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Minto Park is a long, narrow park (basically the size of a city block) that’s widely known for being the go-to venue for the annual memorial event of the École Polytechnique massacre (an antifeminist mass shooting that occurred in 1989). 

For this reason, you can find a monument that honors all the women who have been abused and murdered by men. There are other sculptures and monuments throughout the park as well. 

Aside from this, this park is a great picnic spot because it has a well-manicured lawn and several picnic benches. Feel free to bring your furry friends here because the park is dog-friendly. 

Pro Tip:
If you’re hungry, there are a few dining spots nearby. Examples include Pure Kitchen Elgin (if you’re vegetarian), Elgin Street Diner (a restaurant that’s open 24/7), and The Lieutenant’s Pump (if you want a drink in a relaxing pub). 

Stanley Park

From: felipegaher

Address: 183 Stanley Ave, Ottawa, ON K1M 1P2, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Contact Number: +16135802400

Stanley Park is a lovely park by the riverside. It has plenty of open space that’s perfect for people who want to play sports like soccer, tennis, and baseball. 

There’s also a playground that children will love!

There’s even a section of this park that’s dedicated to dogs. Here, they’re free to run around off-leash, and if there are fellow dogs around, they can play with them. 

Does your dog love playing in the water? The park’s dog area has an access point to the river, so your furry friends can enjoy a fun swimming session. 

Pro Tip:
If you do decide to bring your dogs to this park, make sure to clean up after them.

Brewer Park

From: mistral_themini

Address: 210 Hopewell Ave, Ottawa, ON K1S 2Z5, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Contact Number: +16137378193

Brewer Park is a municipal park that your little ones will love. This is because this park has several play structures and a mini-waterpark!

Aside from that, Brewer Park is perfect for sports lovers because it has three soccer fields, three baseball diamonds, and a hockey arena. If you don’t like sports, you can try hiking or biking around the park instead. 

If you love plants, be sure to check out the Brewer Park Community Garden. It’s a geodesic dome greenhouse filled with all sorts of edible plants!

Pro Tip:
This park is also a venue for the annual House of Paint Hip Hop Festival, an event that gathers over 200 urban artists from all over the world. Check out this website to learn more about this festival. 

Dundonald Park

From: ameliatoday

Address: 516 Somerset St W, Ottawa, ON K1R 5J9, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Located in the Centretown neighborhood, Dundonald Park is only one city block big, and yet it’s the go-to place for relaxation and recreation for nearby residents. 

There are paved pathways for hikers, bikers, and casual strollers, but if you’re tired of walking around, you can sit on any of the benches provided throughout the park. If you’re in the mood for a nice picnic, feel free to spread a blanket on the grass lawn. 

For your little ones, there’s a dedicated playground in the park as well. The playground is equipped with a slide and a set of swings, and there is enough space for them to run around. 

Pro Tips:
If you’re a book lover, there’s a little library set up in the park (near the playground). Browse the books available there, and if something catches your eye, feel free to take it home with you!

If you visit during the summer, you might find all sorts of fun activities like craft fairs and yoga sessions. These events change every year, so you never know what to expect until you go to the park yourself. 

Windsor Park

From: douvrismartialarts

Address: 1 Windsor Ave, Ottawa, ON K1S 1S2, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802590

Windsor Park may be small, but it comes loaded with features. The green lawn is spacious, so you can lay down on a blanket and enjoy a blanket; if you don’t like sitting on the grass, you can make yourself comfortable at the picnic tables instead.

If you’re traveling with your children, there’s a playground with several play structures and swing seats. You can also find a basketball court, a pool, and an ice skating rink here—more fun things to do!

Feel free to bring your furry friends as well because dogs are allowed in this park. 

Pro Tip:
Since this park is located by the riverside, fishing is possible. Just make sure you have the proper fishing permit (if you’re not an Ottawa resident).

Mooney’s Bay Park and Beach

From: jab__photo

Address: 2960 Riverside Dr., Ottawa, ON K1V 8N4, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Mooney’s Bay is an artificial bay that was created when the Rideau Canal was constructed. Because of this, Mooney’s Bay Park has a beach area, making it a perfect destination for people who want to go for a swim. 

Aside from swimming on the beach, you can enjoy other activities in the park. For example, you can rent volleyball nets and play beach volleyball with your friends or family, or you can have a picnic on the green lawn.

During winter, cross-country skiing is the most popular thing to do. Some businesses will set up skiing classes here, so if you don’t know how to ski but are interested in learning, you can attend a beginner’s class.

Pro Tips:
If you’re hungry, head to the on-site restaurant, Baja Burger Shack. This restaurant is open seasonally, so there is a chance it’s closed if you’re visiting in the winter. Hog’s Back Park is near Mooney’s Bay Park. Feel free to stop by if you have some spare time. 

Britannia Park and Beach

From: rustymonkey8

Address: 2805 Carling Ave, Ottawa, ON K2B 8K6, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 10 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Another park that has a beach is the Britannia Park and Beach in the Britannia Heights neighborhood. 

The beach in Britannia Park has two sections. The first is the main beach with the safeguards (this is the perfect place for families with young kids), and the second is a small beach that’s mostly used for launching kayaks, paddleboards, and other vessels.

The park area is a haven for hikers and nature lovers. There is a path that connects the park to Ottawa’s path network, allowing you to hike with ease; there’s also a wetland that’s home to a variety of animals, such as ducks, geese, turtles, rabbits, and more!

Pro Tip:
If you want to bring your dogs, make sure to keep them in the park’s dog section. 

Brantwood Park

From: digitalfish

Address: 39 Onslow Crescent, Ottawa, ON K1S, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802400

Located on the west bank of the Rideau River, Brantwood Park features baseball diamonds, a basket court, and fields that can serve as soccer pitches. Because of this, the park appeals to sports lovers. 

If you’re visiting during the summer, a wading pool is available for you to dip into. Meanwhile, if you’re visiting during the winter, there’s an outdoor ice rink instead, allowing you to show off or practice your ice skating skills. 

Pro Tip:
In the spring, the park tends to get flooded, so bring rubber boots if you’re planning to visit during this season. 

MacDonald Gardens Park

From: orfali

Address: 541 Rideau St, Ottawa, ON, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Despite being located in a city, MacDonald Gardens Park give off cozy, countryside vibes. Because of this, it’s a great park to visit if you want a romantic stroll. 

Formerly a cemetery, this park now features gently rolling hills, and on top of one hill, you can find a summer house that’s more like a pavilion. The summer house offers shade when it’s hot; in the winter, it can serve as a starting point when skiing down. 

The summer house is also a perfect spot for a photoshoot. Capture your best selfies here and spot them on Instagram! 

Pro Tip:
If you’re getting tired of walking around, there are benches scattered around the park. 

Dutchy’s Hole Park

From: shelby_x_li

Address: 154 Mann Ave, Ottawa, ON K1N 8J7, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Dutchy’s Hole Park is the perfect respite for people who want to get away from people for a short while. Nestled in a residential area, this park is quite serene, and it also faces the Rideau River, so you have peaceful scenery to enjoy as well. 

This park also has pathways that connect to other trails, so hiking and biking are two other popular activities here. Dogs are also welcome to join in the fun, so long as you keep them on a leash and clean up after them.  

Pro Tip:
If you’re visiting during the summer, you can cool down by dipping into the park’s wading pool. 

Carlington Park

From: doni_tojo

Address: 1640 Laperriere Ave, Ottawa, ON K1Z 5A6, Canada

Operating Hours: Monday to Sunday—5 am to 11 pm

Contact Number: +16135802595

Carlington Park is pretty spacious with hills. During warm months, these hills are perfect for trekking and hiking, and in the winter, the park becomes an ideal spot for tobogganing and skiing.

You can also just stay on top of a hill and enjoy the view of your surroundings.

Aside from hills, the park also has baseball fields if you want to play a round of baseball. For bikers, there’s a bike pump track here as well; it’s the perfect place to practice your biking skills. 

Pro Tip:
If you want to play basketball, head to the Carlington Recreation Center, which is a few minutes away from the park.  

Remic Rapids Park

From: john_felice_ceprano

Address: Kichi Zībī Mīkan, Ottawa, ON K1A 0K9, Canada

Operating Hours: Open 24 hours

Contact Number: +16132395000


Remic Rapids Park is located on the riverbank, and it’s mostly known for its collection of balanced rock sculptures by artist John Felice Ceprano. 

Aside from the rock sculptures, the park is an important zone for migratory birds, so avian enthusiasts will love bird-watching here. Other than birds, you can also find other wildlife residing in the river. 

If you’re in the mood to relax, you can sit on the grassy lawn and enjoy the views of the river and the city of Gatineau on the other side. You should also bring some snacks to nibble on for more fun. 

Pro Tip:
During the winter, the Kichi Sibi Winter Trail is open to the public. This trail is best suited for skiers, snowshoers, and snow bikers, but hikers can also enjoy it.